Cast and Crew: Douglas Hickcox (Director); Cy Enfield (Screenplay); Elmer Bernstein (Score); Burt Lancaster, Simon Ward, Denholm Elliott, Peter Vaughn, Bob Hoskins, Peter O’ Toole, Freddie Jones
What It’s About: Through incompetent leadership, 1,750 British and South African soldiers face off against 20,000 Zulu warriors with disastrous results for the British.
Why Watch it Today?: Today marks the 133rd anniversary of the Battle of Isandlwana. Last year we highlighted Zulu, which depicts the heroic defense of Rourke’s Drift which ended the day after the Battle of Isandlwana. That film’s success eventually lead to today’s film, released 15 years later. 1979 was quite a different era from 1964, however, and this “prequel” takes a much darker view of the conflict, especially of the British leadership and their overconfident belief in their military (and racial) superiority that helped lead to their defeat, as well as noting that even these “victories” signaled the end for the Zulu nation.
Where to Get It: Netflix (Rental Only)
Other Choices: It’s Robert E. Howard’s birthday, so why not celebrate with the best film based on his work, Conan the Barbarian?